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MCC Representative for Bangladesh
All MCC workers are expected to exhibit a commitment to: a personal Christian faith and discipleship; active church membership; and nonviolent peacemaking.
MCC is an equal opportunity employer, committed to employment equity. MCC values diversity and invites all qualified candidates to apply.
MCC Representative for Bangladesh in Dhaka, Bangladesh
Date Opened:March 2, 2011
Start Date:June 1, 2013
The person in this position will be responsible to provide overall leadership to a large, mature, multifaceted MCC program with a budget of over $1 million that supports already-existing Bangladeshi agencies by providing expatriate volunteers, grants and technical support.
This position is one of the best professional opportunities within MCC. This position is responsible for overseeing the entire MCC Bangladesh program, a program that has made a transition to building the capacity of local groups, with limited operation of its own programs. The MCC Bangladesh program currently includes seven (with a target of 20) expatriate volunteers, 70 Bangladeshi employees and an annual budget of over $1 million. The program currently includes work in agriculture, employment creation in small-scale rural industry and smaller efforts in institutional support and disaster relief.
The MCC Bangladesh Representative is supervised by the MCC Asia Area Director, who sits in Akron, PA. This supervisory relationship is a long distance relationship with two face-to-face meetings a year which are not necessarily in Bangladesh. Communication is primarily conducted through electronic means (e-mail and phone). The successful candidate needs to take initiative in local decision making while keeping the Area Director appraised of critical issues and the progress of the strategic plan. The MCC Bangladesh Representative is required to attend all MCC Asia Leadership Team meetings which is chaired by the MCC Asia Area Director.
The MCC Bangladesh Leadership Team is comprised of the MCC Representative, the three program administrators (Job Creation, Research and Extension Activity Partners, Health Education and Social Services), the Human Resource Coordinator and the CFO. The MCC Bangladesh Leadership Team exists as a critical tool for the Representative to guide the country program through its strategic direction. The MCC Representative makes decisions in consultation with the Leadership Team. The MCC Representative chairs the Leadership Team.
The MCC representative must establish a sense of accountability throughout the program for the manner in which work is done and ensure that MCC's values are evident in the work, lives and interactions of all personnel. The position requires someone who can delegate and allow each program sector the flexibility to work in the manner they deem most appropriate and yet can hold members of the Bangladesh Leadership Team accountable for the results they generate. S/he must be able to interact equally well with expatriates and Bangladeshi staff.
Administrative responsibility for the MCC Bangladesh program:
1. Representation of MCC (30%)
2. Expatriate Support (30%)
3. Program Operation (25%)
4. Office Management (15%)
This position is based in Dhaka, but requires occasional travel throughout the country to stay in touch with program at the field level, to attend meetings and to support expatriate and national staff. Travel is by MCC van, public bus, train, MCC motorcycle and occasionally by airplane. All MCC workers are encouraged to use public transportation when possible. Field locations are approximately three hours from Dhaka.
MCC expatriate and national staff are based both in Dhaka and in several field locations. Dhaka has a large expatriate population of people working for many other organizations. It is a large city of approximately 12 million people and is growing rapidly. Consequently, traffic can be chaotic. There are a number of good restaurants, primarily Chinese, Indian, and Thai available as well as recreational facilities at various national clubs.
Bengali language skills are important for communication with national staff as MCC Bangladesh employs about 70 Bangladeshi staff. Speaking Bengali is also necessary for effective interaction with the local culture. Three months of Bengali language study is provided for all workers. Most senior staff are fluent in English and meetings are held in English. The local culture is mostly Islamic with a mix of Hindu mysticism.
There are good medical facilities in Dhaka. MCC has also used advanced medical services in Bangkok, Thailand when needed.
Located in the tropical zone, Bangladesh has warm weather with a moderate amount of rainfall. Temperatures can range from 35C during the months of July/August to 10C during January. July is usually the wettest month of the year with high humidity.
Western-style schooling is available for children of all ages. Child-care is readily available. Western-trained doctors and reasonable medical facilities are available. A variety of churches in Dhaka have regular English and Bengali services.
Bangladesh is a stimulating socio-cultural context in which to live. It is a land of contrasts - lush green rice fields and high population density, extreme poverty and generous hospitality, brightly colored saris and conservative Muslim culture, hot humid weather and cooling rains. While adjustment to the culture, general living and program administration can be challenging at times, MCC workers have found a rich and rewarding experience in their relationships with the host country and their work. MCC expatriates are able to form meaningful relationships with MCC national staff, some who have worked with MCC for more than 20 years, and other Bangladeshis. These relationships, along with the critical work MCC Bangladesh carries out to alleviate the extreme poverty of this country, help create a meaningful MCC experience which brings hope to all involved.
In addition to making their own cultural adjustment, the MCC Representative needs to help expatriate volunteers deal with challenging social and cultural issues. Bangladesh experiences frequent natural disasters including cyclones, tidal waves, floods and tornadoes which we must be prepared to deal with in our programming. Political uncertainty is often a factor complicating travel timing and program operation. The MCC Representative needs to be able to function well in an environment of great uncertainty.